Want to teach your child Arabic for free, but can’t find effective teaching tools?
As a parent, you want the best for your little one.
By the way…
Have you already invested a lot of money in Arabic lessons, but your child still cannot communicate in Arabic?
Not to mention that that they are terribly demotivated, too?
It is excruciatingly difficult and cruelly infuriating!
There is an exceptional and free educational tool for teaching Arabic to children.
You certainly know this tool, although you probably underestimate it.
You will surely find this educational game ridiculously simplistic at first, but it is cleverly powerful in practice.
So, without further ado…
Here it is:
The tool is a nursery rhyme.
A lot of psycholinguistic research has been done on this subject.
So, hold on tight…
As it so happens…
The information that you will discover in this ultimate guide has two characteristics: it comes from serious linguistic research, and it is explained simply.
You will soon understand the 8 reasons that make nursery rhymes exceptional educational tool for teaching your child Arabic for free (some reasons may surprise you!)
But that’s not all:
You will also discover practical tips and tricks for taking action, and making nursery rhymes a great ally.
A superb bonus will be offered to you at the end, with an unprecedented compilation of wonderful nursery rhymes for the happiness of your little darling.
1. Nursery rhymes will allow your child to lay an essential foundation for their mastery of Arabic through the construction of their phonological awareness
1.1. What is your little one’s phonological awareness?
In reality, it’s just a complicated term to express something simple, yet very fundamental to your child.
Your little one’s phonological awareness is their ability to perceive the sounds of language and manipulate them.
In other words, …
If your child hears you happily humming the word “cat”, they will be able to perceive that there are three sounds: “c”, “a” and “t”.
If they are in a devilishly playful mood, they’ll say, “rat”! And that is a simple manipulation of the sounds since your adorable little devil will have replaced the “c” sound with the “r” sound, which results in “rat” instead of “cat”.
This is simply phonological awareness.
This ability to discriminate between sounds is of upmost importance for your child to learn Arabic!
1.2. Why is phonological awareness so important for your little one’s Arabic learning experience?
Well, here’s the secret:
“The voice contains only what the ear hears.”
In other words, …
Your child can only make sounds that they’ve heard before. Because, indeed, absorbing a language is to above all absorb its sounds. And your little one must absorb the sounds of the Arabic language in order to be able to understand and communicate in Arabic.
There’s one big problem…
Your little one cannot absorb the sounds of the Arabic language.
Of course, he can’t…
Because he can’t hear them.
Imagine that a Chinese tourist stops you when you have no notion of Mandarin. He goes off on a monumental monologue of not one, not two, but five minutes.
What’s going on?
You are certainly listening to it, although probably the only thing you hear is a shapeless, indigestible paste of intermingled noises.
And by the way, you do not know if this “noise” that you have just discerned in this monologue is a sound, a word or even a phrase. Or was it perhaps just the speaker clearing their throat?
This is exactly the same situation your child finds themselves in when they learn the Arabic language.
They must first learn to hear sounds, and distinguish them, before they can absorb its phonemes, and finally produce them themselves.
Now, you’ve got it…
This ability to discriminate between sounds is of upmost importance for your child’s Arabic learning experience!
Phonological awareness is indeed an essential foundation for your little one’s mastery of Arabic, right?
And how do nursery rhymes fit into all of this?
1.3. Why are nursery rhymes outstanding for developing your child’s phonological awareness?
I bet you’re thinking your little one could
simply listen to Arabic. There isn’t anything exceptional about nursery rhymes
Yet, in fact…
Nursery rhymes have 4 explosive ingredients that help develop your child’s phonological awareness in a way that no other audio could.
And this is precisely what makes nursery rhymes so exceptional!
Here are the 4 famous explosive ingredients of nursery rhymes:
- 1st Ingredient: the playfulness of the nursery rhymes is extraordinarily magnetic.
- 2nd ingredient: the sounds of the nursery rhymes are wonderfully magical.
- 3rd ingredient: the repetition of the nursery rhymes is devilishly effective.
- 4th ingredient: the rhythm of the nursery rhymes is incredibly powerful.
And by the way…
Here is an example of the bewitching power of rhythm:
It’s crazy …
Did you blissfully hang around until the end of the video?
And just as well…
Imagine the spellbinding effect this song can have on your little darling – they’ll definitely love it!
These 4 nursery rhyme ingredients will guide and help your little one discern the sounds of the Arabic language, memorise them easily, reproduce them, and maintain their interest and their motivation for a long period.
But the nursery rhymes have more than one trick of their sleeve!
2. Nursery rhymes will allow your child to have a superb pronunciation of Arabic and a brilliant elocution
Imagine that one evening, you surprise your child in the middle of a conversation with their favourite soft toy.
You are at their doorway, and they have not seen you yet.
But you don’t move and you take a delightful moment to savour this melodious stream of lyrics streaming past your ears.
These are the words of your child, so finely and clearly spoken in Arabic.
What a dream, right?
This sweet dream may soon become your vivid reality.
Because indeed, …
Others have done it before, so why not you?
And thus, …
Nursery rhymes can help you on this fantastic adventure.
Because indeed, …
They will allow your little one to avoid, or correct, two tricky problems that many Arabic learns face.
Those thorny issues are:
- A pronunciation that makes your ears bleed,
- And an articulation that makes you gasp.
Imagine the state of your pour little interlocutors…
How will a nursery rhyme improve your child’s pronunciation and speaking skills?
In order to communicate in Arabic, you have to listen, but you also have to speak the language. And this is what the nursery rhyme does admirably well.
Just as you have understood correctly,
nursery rhymes help to train the ear to the characteristics of the language.
But these language contributions must be reused by your child so that they
anchor them in their memory.
Nursery rhymes provide this active learning opportunity since the songs are fun for your child, their rhythm and melody are engaging. And in no time, look…
Your child is already starting to spontaneously imitate the sounds of the nursery rhymes – they repeat the words and then learn their sentences. And you can already hear them singing this song.
But there is even better…
Nursery rhymes are full of interjections and funny words. And the magic of children’s songs is that they help little ones practice difficult groups of sounds with the goal of improving their speech.
Perhaps you know this French nursery rhyme?
Yes, the famous “Pistachio moustache” with picopiche and picopache”?
Picopiche and picopache
Pif paf my pitafe
Pif pouf my slipper
Well precisely, …
You can’t imagine how much fun little ones take in the challenges of pronouncing these difficult groups of words and phonemes. And it will be exactly the same for your child with nursery rhymes in Arabic.
There is something else happening at the same time.
Your child doesn’t know it, but they are
building and training their tongue and mouth muscles using the
different sounds and intonations of the song.
Interesting, isn’t it?
And without a doubt, this is fundamental since the speech skills of children, and of adults, rely on the muscles of their mouth and face.
You see, nursery rhymes also contribute to the physical development of your child. It’s amazing, isn’t it?
Well, certainly, the rest is even more exciting!
3. Nursery rhymes will help your child absorb the intonation and rhythm of the Arabic language
Do you remember the intonation of your voice when you ask a question?
Or, when you tell a friend about an exhilarating event that just happened to you?
Your child needs to learn these variations of intonation and rhythm of the Qur’an in order to be able to understand, and be understood.
This is one of the fundamentals of communication.
The rhythm and the repetition of the nursery rhyme will splendidly guide your child in their learning of the variations and the rhythm of the language of Ishmael.
But there is something even better!
You are now going to touch on one of the fundamentals of the language…
4. Nursery rhymes will allow your child to learn the basics of the Arabic language
Nursery rhymes will help your child absorb the linguistic bases of Arabic.
This is what your little one will learn:
- The structure of a sentence,
- Grammatical rules,
- the placement of adjectives,
- and much more!
It’s because nursery rhymes lines are short that they are easy for your child to repeat. And unsurprisingly, the lyrics of children’s songs quickly become part of toddlers’ first sentences.
Look at this illustration…
Do you know the nursery rhyme “it is necessary”?
It’s a famous French nursery rhyme aimed at correcting the common error of “I have to I take”!
Here it is:
I have to take my hat,
said the crow,
to go to the zoo
greet the birds
that come from the Congo.
I have to take my umbrella,
Said the magpie,
To go to Paris
To look for canaries
that come from Chile.
And there are plenty of others…
For example, there are songs for introducing oneself:
- the notion of the conditional,
- the notion of the negative sentence with “do…. not”,
- and, the use of “since” and “as soon as”.
The same goes for Arabic nursery rhymes!
And here’s the great part:
These language models and learned syntactic structures will be able to be reinvested in your child’s spoken interactions.
It’s not immediate. In fact, there is always an incubation time where your child will silently soak up and feed on new information. It’s an undercover progression which is powerful but not necessarily visible. And when you least expect it, you are likely to be surprised by your child’s new phrases!
But that’s not all…
5. Nursery rhymes will allow your child to enrich their vocabulary
Nursery rhymes are magic because they are formidable tools for developing your child’s lexicon.
Thanks to nursery rhymes, your child will hear new words that they would not have heard in common language.
Most nursery rhymes stand out because of the frequent repetition of their words.
This repetition, and therefore this long exposure to new words, makes it easy to anchor a new lexicon in the child’s brain.
And interestingly enough…
Through nursery rhymes, children are encouraged to approach a thematic lexicon, such as that of colours, parts of the body or animals, for example.
And it is thanks to the richness and diversity of their themes that nursery rhymes will majestically enrich your child’s lexical repertoire
And better still…
Nursery rhymes also offer the opportunity to practice the learned vocabulary. Indeed, these songs are designed so that a theme is chosen to provide a specific context for learning vocabulary.
But, the wonders of nursery rhymes don’t end there!
The rest will certainly surprise you…
6. Nursery rhymes will help your child to absorb the structure of a story
Nursery rhymes will teach your child the structure of a story.
This is a fundamental skill for your child to become a good reader in Arabic.
This is because…
In order to develop reading skills, your child needs to understand the stages and chronological order of events in a story.
They must also understand how what happens first affects what happens next.
Although usually short, nursery rhymes tell a story that has a beginning, middle and end. This teaches children that events happen in sequence, and the little ones then begin to learn how to understand and follow a story.
It’s no wonder that nursery rhymes are among the first stories a child is able to follow and understand.
Nursery rhymes will magically provide the building blocks your child needs to become an excellent reader in Arabic!
But that’s not all…
What follows is quite breath-taking: you will discover the effect of nursery rhymes on your little one’s brain mechanisms…
7. Nursery rhymes will allow your child to learn Arabic easily, through the development of their memorisation skills
Nursery rhymes will allow your child to learn Arabic easily and quickly by developing their memorisation skills.
Memorisation is a pillar of learning.
Without the capacity to store, preserve and restore information; that is to say, without memory, there is no learning.
How do nursery rhymes help your child with retaining information?
The answer is simple:
Nursery rhymes activate both hemispheres of your little one’s brain and that’s fantastic for one reason: Psycholinguists reveal that this simultaneous activation of the brain creates an optimal situation in which the most productive learning takes place.
I bet you’re wondering how this is possible.
How can a simple nursery rhyme engage both lobes of the brain?
Here’s the secret:
As you’ll come to understand, the brain is made up of two hemispheres: the right and the left. The right hemisphere activates when learning melodies while the left hemisphere activates when learning words.
A nursery rhyme is composed of a melody and words, which allows both hemispheres of the brain to engage simultaneously. And it is through this mechanism that the song puts your child in an optimal situation for memorisation, and therefore for learning Arabic.
That’s marvellous, no?
What could be more exciting than learning through song!
What follows is fundamental, because it touches on an essential pillar of any didactic approach to teaching Arabic to children…
Take a look…
8. Nursery rhymes will allow your child to learn Arabic while playing, and therefore will maintain their motivation in the long run
Motivation is crucial for your child to learn Arabic because learning a language is a process that steady effort over a long period of time.
Learning a language is not a gruelling sprint, but an exhilarating marathon!
How do you keep your child’s interest?
The answer is simple:
It is through playing and fun that you child will stay motivated to learn Arabic. And in line with this, nursery rhymes are exceptionally fun educational games for your little one.
Listen to this nursery rhyme and try to put yourself in your child’s shoes …
Imagine how your child feels when listening to this delightful melody…
They are transported by this delicately bewitching and pleasantly reassuring rhythm. What a pleasure to the senses! They want to jump, ecstatic to the rhythm of the song, and dance endlessly.
And did you hear those words?
They are intelligently simple and extremely catchy: they listen to them and understand them easily. And it is then that in a whirlwind of dazzling colour, an intriguing, confusing and devilishly captivating world scrolls through their young mind. A world where little monkeys would jump on a bed…
Crazy, and awfully enchanting for a child, isn’t it?
I bet you might be thinking the same thing as I am now.
You say to yourself, maybe, that this is overwhelmingly more interesting than grammar exercises, right?
And you are right!
Arabic is a language to be lived and shared! And the secret recipe for learning is wonderfully playfulness sprinkled with magic and captivation.
And the result is…
Flamboyant and sparkling motivation for your child to learn Arabic.
As a parent, you want to give this invaluable gift of bilingualism to your child. And perhaps, you also want to pass on your wonderful linguistic and cultural heritage to your little one.
And it is possible!
The following will give you tips and practical advice on how to reap all the remarkable benefits of nursery rhymes, and how to taste the fruits of your efforts in a quick manner.
So, without further ado…
9. How to put it in practice?
9.1. Practical advice for parents: 9 effective tips
“Knowing is not enough, you have to apply. Willpower is not enough, you have to know how to act.”
So, here are some secrets to help you on your new adventure, and to make nursery rhymes a magical tool to add to your repertoire to teach your adorable child Arabic:
- Taking action is essential because the only certainty of the one who does nothing is the absence of results. And remember the famous Arabic proverb: “He who learns without acting ploughs without sowing.
- Parents’ motivation is marvellously communicative because if you are genuinely motivated and interested in transmitting the Arabic language to your child, then guess what? It’s communicative! But be careful – the reverse is also true: “If Mum and Dad don’t care about Arabic, I shouldn’t care either.”
- The motivation to learn Arabic is fuelled by a powerful “why” because without the “why” the road becomes chaotic. Why do I want to teach my child Arabic? This answer, which comes from the depths of your bowels, is what will make you excel on days when you lack the will.
- The motivation to use nursery rhymes is also fuelled by a powerful “why” because a great way to keep the fire going is to keep remembering the wonderful benefits of nursery rhymes for your little one. And besides, if you still doubt it a little, take a look at this article on the 3 effective pedagogical approaches to teaching Arabic to children, and you will be pleasantly surprised to see that nursery rhymes tick all the boxes without exception!
- Perseverance is the breeding ground for success because learning a language is a sensational marathon, not a gruelling sprint. Motivation serves as an initial propellant, but it is regularity that will create a habit that will be the fertile ground from which your success will flourish.
- Practicing is fabulous because there is no silver bullet for learning Arabic, or for anything else. Practice makes perfect and, it is by practicing that your child will soon surprise you with their exceptional command of Arabic.
- Active learning is vital because an essential aspect of nursery rhymes is their interactivity. Encourage your child to hum, mimic sounds and combine body language with them.
- Being Arabic-speaking is fortunately not a prerequisite because not all parents speak Arabic. And besides, you can take this moment to learn Arabic with your child. Who said nursery rhymes were exclusively for children?
- Applying too much pressure is counterproductive because doing your best is the main thing and, letting go is magic.
9.2. How to cleverly choose a nursery rhyme?
Not all nursery rhymes are created equal, and some will work better for your child because every little one is different.
So, here are some tips to guide you in your choice of nursery rhymes for your child’s viewing pleasure:
- Repetition is magic. If your child is small, a nursery rhyme with lots of repetitions will help them learn sounds more easily.
- Simple and short verses are the key. Again, for a toddler, it’s the short, repeated words that will anchor themselves most effectively in their wonderful young brain.
- Your child’s needs are the compass. If, for example, your child has trouble with certain sounds, you can help them by selecting a rhyme that works precisely on those phonemes.
- The dialect of nursery rhymes is fantastic. There are plenty of variations of Arabic to choose from for your child’s nursery rhymes: from Modern Standard Arabic, to dialects of Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Palestine, Syria, Lebanon and many more.
- The themes of the nursery rhymes are key. Your child will have so much more pleasure if the nursery rhymes revolve around themes of their environment, such as colours or parts of the body. This is why: these themes have meaning for your child, and they understand them in their mother tongue.
But be careful…
“An Imperfect action is better than a perfect inaction”
Fortunately, there is no such thing as perfection, and if a nursery rhyme doesn’t meet all of your criteria, so be it! Rules are meant to be broken!
So, we say “bismillah”, and we go for it because sometimes later becomes never, right?
So, without further ado, let yourself be transported by this fantastic compilation of nursery rhymes (with music! (A large selection of nursery rhymes without music is also included)
10. A compilation of nursery rhymes to teach your child Arabic for free!
10.1. Nursery rhymes without music
10.1. Nursery rhymes to learn the names of fruits in Arabic
10.2. Nursery rhymes to learn the names of vegetables in Arabic
10.3. Nursery rhymes to learn colours in Arabic
10.4. Nursery rhymes to learn the Arabic alphabet
10.5. Nursery rhyme to learn body parts in Arabic
10.6. Other themes of nursery rhymes
Now it’s your turn:
Let us know in the comments which benefits of nursery rhymes surprised you the most, or the one that you liked the most?
And which rhyme would you like to start with?